St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson (39) carries the ball through the Atlanta Falcons defense during the second quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Tom Gannam) By Tom Gannam
Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle Corey Peters (91) pressures St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford (8) during the first quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Tom Gannam) By Tom Gannam
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Matt Ryan threw two touchdown passes and directed an offense so dominant that three St. Louis defenders left with cramps in the Atlanta Falcons' 34-17 victory over the Rams on Sunday.
Sam Bradford also had a pair of touchdown passes and set an NFL rookie record with 169 consecutive passes without an interception before William Moore picked off a shovel pass at the 2 with 3:24 to go. That was the clincher for the Falcons (8-2), who won their fourth in a row and ended the Rams' four-game home winning streak.
Ryan was 26 of 39 for 253 yards with touchdown passes to Brian Finneran and Justin Peelle, and Roddy White set up scores with nine catches for 83 yards. Ryan has five touchdown passes without an interception the last two games.
The St. Louis defense forced three chip shot field goals, but couldn't get off the field quickly enough against an Atlanta offense that had a pair of drives that lasted 6:39 and 7:06 and held the ball for nearly 36 minutes. The Rams (4-6) were so gassed that safety Oshiomoghe Atogwe and cornerbacks Ron Bartell and Justin King all missed time with cramps.
Michael Turner was untouched on a 39-yard run the first play after the two-minute warning and White caught a 2-point conversion pass. Turner had 131 yards on 28 carries for his fourth 100-yard game.
The Rams allowed no more than 17 points their first five home games.
St. Louis led 10-3 early in the second quarter after Josh Brown hit a season-best 53-yard field goal, and again at 17-16 early in the third after Bradford and Brandon Gibson hooked up on a 13-yard fade pattern.
The interception was the first in five games for Bradford, the No. 1 pick, who thrived despite a set of undistinguished pass catchers
Bradford showed off his strong arm on his first touchdown pass, rolling out to the right and throwing against the grain on a 25-yard pass to rookie tight end Mike Hoomanawanui.
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